I began volunteering at Childrens Hospice South West approximately 11 years ago. Initially I wanted to be able to do something to "give back" and make a difference in other peoples lives. I volunteer for a few hours every Tuesday morning by helping in reception with the post and other documents.
My other job role involves running our family business and I have found the balance of both areas of my work to be really positive. I love coming in to volunteer, mix with the other staff and the different people I encounter, I feel privileged to be able to support in any way I can.
I have three grown up children who are all married with families. I also have nine grandchildren ranging from five to 26 years old, I enjoy children's company and have a great time with them all. I get involved with such a variety of activities such as going to Stamford Bridge to watch Chelsea Football Club with my eldest 18 year old and clothes shopping with my 26 year old grandaughter. I also watch her in her theatre productions - she is going to be playing the lead Maria in The Sound of Music at Queens Theatre in Barnstaple. My seven year old grandaughter is teaching me the 'Floss' dance! I am also the goalie for the younger boys when we go down to the park for a kick around. Aren't I lucky to be part of their lives.
I feel for the parents who come into CHSW with a sick child who might have siblings. The sick child desperately needs mum and dads attention and they have to snatch precious moments with their other children.
CHSW encompasses all the generations. Grandparents and family friends are all made so very welcome at Little Bridge House.
The love and support that comes from Little Bridge is second to none, from a welcome at reception to the wonderful dedicated care staff, Alison who feeds us all so well and creates a lovely warm family atmosphere to the Sibling team, I could go on for ever, it's such a great place.
I hope my views don't sound too gushy, but it is a great place, and when I retire next year I will be able to come more often to help.
Best thing about volunteering
The lovely people we help and meet
One word to describe volunteering with CHSW